Sunday, June 29, 2008

Our Weekend Away-So Fun, So Refreshed!

This weekend we went to Chicago to visit P-Daddy's brother Uncle Chitown and my greatest friend Amy (and Paul) P-Daddy and I had not been away together without JD since JD's birth so this was very exciting and much needed! :) And it was WONDERFUL! Grandma Principal and Grandpa Menard cared for JD and since they had taken care of him before I was at ease with leaving him. They have a pool for him to play in and HE LOVES THE POOL (stay tuned for a ridiculous amount of "JD in June" pictures that mostly consist of him in the pool).

P-Daddy and I in front of Uncle Chitowns place

Back to us (its hard for me to focus on talking about us, sorry!)...we went to Uncle Chitowns very "hip and with it" apartment on Friday and walked to this very neat Italian resteraunt nearby. R2, Uncle Chitowns wonderful g/f met us for dinner and we had a wonderful time. Rewind to the fact that I had two beers before dinner, granted they were Sam Adams, but I was tipsy, then 1 glass of wine with dinner, getting tipsier (trying to hide it because I am clearly the only one in our "party" even remotely tipsy), followed up by me drinking water the rest of dinner to sober up so I could drive us out to the suburbs for the second part of our night. What? You said second part of your night? I know! I haven't had a two-part night in what feels like years! Crap....I need to get out more often.

Uncle Chitown, R2 and P-Daddy in front of Uncle Chitown'splace.

Skip to a 40 minute drive to downtown Naperville where we met Amy, Paul and a crew of people to celebrate Amy's younger sisters 21st birthday! I was sober so it was time to purchase the birthday girl a shot (and of course take one with her). It was soo much fun! We went to a couple of different bars, we took a shot with Mallory and looked at each other and said it had been a while since we were out for a 21st birthday and then smiled at lots of good memories from our own 21st's (you can only smile about the too many shots/vomiting now... right?). I felt like a champion because I wasn't the one at the bar asking people to leave, I was actually told we were leaving (go me!) AND I had an additional beer with the birthday girl when we got back to Amy's. I was on fire that night! Anyway Mallory (birthday girl) was on fire too, she took 21 shots and really didn't get sick and felt pretty okay the next day! She is my hero.

The Birthday Girl/My Hero

Saturday was filled with shopping for the girls and golf for the guys. Amy and I are really good shoppers together if I do say so myself. We would go shopping in college when we didn't have money to do so and would walk out of the mall with way too many bags singing "Oops I did it again, walked into the mall and spent money I didn't have... (don't remember the rest but we had a whole song, I know-we were cool). Anyway we are two of the most financially responsible people I know our age so don't get worried about our spending habits! I love shopping with her though because we always end up being goofy about something that makes me belly laugh. Andthe belly laughs were out on Saturday several times!

P-Daddy and I being goofy at Amy and Paul's (remember in college when you couldn't find ONE picture that didn't include you with some sort of alcoholic we can't fine any WITH alcohol, so we did our best to include us with drinks all weekend!) :)

Saturday night we grilled out some amazing steaks and beautiful shrimp and had a few cocktails again (two nights in a row, crazy I know). We were kind of exhausted from the night before and the day of shopping/golf so we called it a night early.

Us Again!

After all of that detail I really could have wrapped it up by saying that our weekend in Chicago was awesome! P-Daddy and I love to vacation together whether it be a long weekend or a week or two away, its always been fun to experience new and different things together. And with each new place we brought home a new piece of a memory of our life together and I secretly think we both fell in love again. For us it has been an outlet to get away (prior to JD) so it was wonderful to fall in love all over again in Chicago this weekend! We probably appreciate it more because we don't do it very often. That is not to say that this was long overdue and we should be better, but I think once a quarter is probaby enough for our taste! I promise that it is sooo much harder to leave JD than I EVER thought it would be. And not just for the reasons that you may think, but also because he has become our fun. We love to hang out with our little man! JD had a wonderful time with Grandma Principal and Grandpa Menard. They are wonderful with him and we are sooo appreciative of their help!

Amy and I taking a picture of ourselves! " NERDS!"
Thank you Amy and Paul for hosting us all weekend! We love you to pieces and can't wait to come back!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Better Naps=Better Playtime

JD is the most wonderful gift that has ever been given to us, hands down. I thank God for our blessing every day! Over the past 9 months we have come to realize that JD loves us a lot too because he would rather hang out with us (who could blame him, we are cool parents :) than sleep. Which translates into we didn't sleep much either. He went from sleeping through the night at 2 months old (I know!) which lasted all of 4 weeks to waking up once, twice, three times in the middle of the night. This led to the us going down the bad road of having him sleep with us. Then GranBeck came into town in February and took control of the sleeping situation and he miraculously started to sleep through the night again! He back tracked a little at one point but overall he has been sleeping 12-14 hours steadily since then! If you are not a mom and you are reading this you think this whole scenario may sound a little over dramatic and not soooo bad. All I can say is that you REALLY don't know what lack of sleep is until you have a child.

JD at 1 month old taking a peaceful nap

This is a time he finally gave up and just fell asleep in his Bumbo!

JD LOVED to sleep in his swing...we were sad for him to grow out of it!
So back to the sleep. So he was sleeping through the night but his naps were literally two, 20 minute naps a day. We recently had JD's 9 month appointment and I asked the doctor how many naps he should be taking and how long they should be (thinking that maybe, just maybe I was being over dramatic and the two, 20 minute nap thing was normal). Well I wasn't being over dramatic, he told me two, 2 HOUR naps a day is what he should be getting. I laughed, then apologized for laughing and explained our situation. He just said that I needed to work on it and leave him in his crib and let him cry it out. Since I know that for nap time this method DOES NOT work I have just been doing what I have always been doing and we have been rolling with the 2, 2o minute nap thing. Until...UNTIL this week (yes I am knocking on wood) when he started sleeping an hour, then an hour and a half, and then this morning 2 AND A HALF HOURS! I was and still am in shock!

This is one of JD's tricks, falling asleep in his Jumperoo (sometimes he looks like this and is still jumping)
JD NOT taking a nap in his Pack N Play.

This napping business has led to a much happier boy during the day. Not that he was crabby all the time but I would that at times he had a short fuse. Now he just wants to play and play! I just had to share this video with you because it is our little one having so much fun! I have loved every different stage he has gone through but for now this one is taking the cake!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

MLD's Easy Ice Cream Cake

Because P-Daddy's favorite cake is Ice Cream Cake from either Dairy Queen or Ritters I decided to save some $$$ this year and brave (what I thought was going to be a hard) homemade ice cream cake. Turns out, its pretty darn easy! I thought I would share my creation with you just in case you have people in your family that love a good ice cream cake too!

What you will need:
·Cake mix of choice (I used Duncan Hines Moist and Deluxe White)
·1, 1.5 Quarts of Ice Cream (I used Bryers Rocky Road)
·3 8oz. containers of Whipped Cream
·1 tablespoon of Sour Cream
·Decoration topping of choice
·9” Round Cake Pan

How to make:
Put together ingredients according to the cake mix box. Once all ingredients are mixed well add the 1 tablespoon of sour cream. Mix well. Seperate cake mix in half. Grease the 9" cake pan and lightly flour. Pour half of the cake mix in the round cake pan. Bake until golden brown on top. Remove this cake from pan and place on a cooling rack. Pour second half of cake mix in greased and floured round cake pan and bake. When golden brown, place on the cooling rack.

Once both cakes are completely cool, place one of the cakes on a dinner plate. Get the ice cream out and let sit for approximately 15 minutes. Place the entire 1.5 Quart of ice cream on the bottom layer of cake (I used my hands to get all of it on there and somewhat "pretty" as quickly as possible). Add the top layer of cake and put in the freezer for one hour. Remove from after an hour and cut around the edges so that ice cream fits between the two cake layers. Add whipped cream "icing" and decoration of choice. Place in freezer for an additional two hours to allow the cake to set.

Bon Appetite!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Happy Birthday to Daddy!

Daddy with one of his gifts
P-Daddy turned the big 29 yesterday! YEY! We spent the day as a family giving Dad his presents, going to the pool and playing. Then, Grandma Principal came over and Mommy and Daddy got to go out on a DATE! That was exciting! And we managed to have adult conversation that only consisted of talking about JD for 5 minutes. :) Its harder to do than one might think so we were proud of ourselves!

Daddy and JD enjoying some pool time.

Daddys favorite gift (and it camed stocked with his favorite beverages)!

Uncle Badgeman and R came over to help Grandma Principal babysit JD and stayed for some Happy Birthday ice cream cake! It was fun to visit with family over Daddys Birthday!

Make a wish Dad!

Our Ode to Dad on his 29th birthday is that we love him for all that he is and who he aspires to be! P-Daddy is a wonderful husband, best friend and father. His jokes are hysterical, his laugh is contagious, and his heart is always in the right place. I love you P-Daddy (JD says "I love you daddy"). Happy Birthday!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

"Farewell to Old Friends, Lets Raise a Glass to the Bitter End..."-Dixie Chicks

Gotta love the Dixie Chicks and their choice of words (at least their musical choice of words). Last night we had a little shin dig to say farewell to an old and wonderful friend KB. She is moving to Boston next week for a job promotion! We are so excited for her new adventure in life and can't wait to hear all of her fun Boston stories.

KB with her LARGE cake!

I met KB freshmen year of college. We sort of knew each other due to the fact we lived right across the hall but we really became friends once we joined our sorority. She is a wonderful person who is dedicated to what ever she puts her mind to. She is also spunky. I like spunky. I think its a wonderful trait in a person and am going to miss her spunkiness.

Last night was spent just like a normal "girls night out" for us. We typically have cocktails, eat something and talk really loudly over each other telling lots of funny and (sometimes) inappropriate stories. P-Daddy and Jeremy were able to be with us which is always interesting because I think they get overwhelmed by all of the different conversations going on at one time. I also think sometimes they get uncomfortable at how honest we are with each other...about everything. So they split their time inside talking guy stuff I imagine and outside with us mostly just listening and laughing. But back to the girls...I love how we are together. As an outsider I am not sure it would be a whole lot of fun (and I think we completely annoy people when we go to public places) but being on the inside is just lovely. Sure, sometimes you don't get to finish your own story (becuase someone else talked louder than you and everyone found what they were saying more interesting), or sometimes you are the butt of the joke, but whatever it is its worth having this group of friends who knows you inside and out. So no matter where we are in the world, we can pick up the phone and call anyone of us and laugh, cry, or just chatter about anything and everything. We are, in some weird midwestern way our own version of the Sex & The City gals...or the Golden Girls (college joke). HA!

So lets raise our glass to KB as we bid her farewell to Boston! (I will raise my cup of coffee). And to Aimee, Godmom, Gdub, KB and JBU...thank you for being great friends!

From left: (Back row) Gdub, Aimee, Me (Front Row) Katie, KB, Godmom (with Baby Jdub) and JBU

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

MLD's Dutch Apple Pie Recipe

As is the recipe I created for homemade Dutch Apple Pie. It was yummy! If you try it, I hope you enjoy!

What you will need for the pie crust and filling:
·A pie tin or pan
·½ cup unsalted butter
·4 large FUJI Apples
·¼ cup white sugar
·¼ cup light brown sugar
·1 tablespoon cinnamon
·1 teaspoon lemon juice
·Dash of salt
·1 box of Jiffy Pie Crust Mix

What you will need for pie topping:
·½ cup white sugar
·½ cup flour
·1 tablespoon cinnamon
·3 tablespoons unsalted butter
·1 teaspoon water


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Pie Topping: Mix together sugar, flour, cinnamon, butter and water until consistency is somewhat crumbly. Set aside.

Pie Crust and Filling: Prepare the Jiffy Pie Crust mix as directed. Place dough in pie pan as directed and put in preheated oven for 5 minutes then set aside. Peel and cut apples into small squares. Place apples in a mixing bowl. Pour in sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, lemon juice with apples and mix together well (until all the apples are coated with the sugar mixture). Pour apple mixture into pie crust. Cut your 1/2 cup of butter into tablespoon size pieces and place all over apple mixture. Top with Pie Topping mixture. Bake for 40 minutes or until apple mixture is bubbly and pie topping is golden brown.

Tip: I covered the pie with tin foil at about the 20 minute mark so that the top of the pie wouldn't get too crunchy.

Bon Appetite!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

We've Officially Jumped! (on the blogger bandwagon that is)

So I have to start out by saying that for those of you reading this that I once teased for having a blog of your own I am sorry. Because I love the blog world, I stalk you and your friends blogs regularly and am not quite sure how I have held off this long considering my newest venture into stay-at-home motherhood. Not only am I sorry I also need to thank you...for helping to make my days go faster while JD is napping or playing on the floor and I need to zone. I am fascinated by you and your children's lives (even though I don't know most of you) so keep your blogs a comin! I hope I am as entertaining to others as they have been to me. :)

Now a picture (because I don't want you to have to wait until the end of my first post, seeing that you don't even know me or my family most likely, a picture may help).

This is JD swinging for the first time. Can you tell he likes it?

I got a little carried away in the "about me" section...something I will probably simplify later, but again WAY excited about this and just couldn't help myself.

Today is Father's Day! Happy Father's Day Daddy! Daddy is playing golf and we are creating our blog. We went to church again this morning which was great. P-Daddy and I have decided that Sunday mornings are our weekly date now because JD goes in the nursery for an hour and plays while we do some praying. I would say that in God's eyes we are choosing an amazing date. As excited as we are to be attending church on a regular basis, I think we should continue to please God with our Sunday date and also venture out with a real babysitter once in a while too. We have STUNK at that game ever since JD came into our lives. Its a lot harder to ask people you know to babysit than one would think.

Papa President and VP are in town (playing golf with Daddy) for Father's Day too. Happy Father's Day Dad! (even though this shout out will never be seen by him considering Papa President hates computers). We are having steaks on the grill when the men return. I made my first homemade Apple Pie last night so if it turns out I will share my recipe with you all. It was super easy but I am worried that it may not be sweet enough. :)

Happy Father's Day to all of the wonderful dads out there!

Amy this now means that you have to create your own blog too. Its time...